Kent top the divisional table after the first session of matches in the County Championships Over-60s Premier Weekend. Sussex and newly-promoted Hertfordshire are in hot pursuit – one point behind the defending champions.
The first Premier Weekend of the new season took place over the weekend at Milton Keynes Table Tennis Club. Playing in the top division this year were the following eight counties: Bedfordshire, Cheshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Sussex and Warwickshire. Hertfordshire and Lincolnshire were the newly-promoted teams.
The first session on Saturday morning proved typical of what was to come with four highly competitive matches. There were two draws (Sussex vs Bedfordshire & Kent vs Cheshire) along with two 7-3 wins for Warwickshire and Hertfordshire (over Lancashire and Lincolnshire respectively).
The afternoon was just as close with 6-4 wins for Sussex and Kent and 7-3 wins for Lincolnshire and Bedfordshire.
So at the end of the first day, no team had managed to secure an unblemished record. Bedfordshire led the divisional table on sets difference from Sussex and Kent – with all three teams on three points from their two matches. Lancashire were at the foot of the table, yet to get off the mark.
Sunday’s matches followed the same pattern. There were 6-4 wins for Kent, Hertfordshire and Cheshire and a 5-5 draw between Sussex and Warwickshire.
The performance of Warwickshire in securing a draw was particularly notable as one of their players had picked up an injury during Saturday’s session and wasn’t able to compete on the Sunday. A singles win and two mixed-doubles wins by Diane St Ledger set up the opportunity to get something out of the match despite being a player short. Lester Bertie and Michael Browne each secured a singles win to rescue a point from the match.
At the end of the second day’s play, Kent were back in their familiar position at the top of the table with 5pts from three matches. Narrowly behind are Hertfordshire and Sussex, both on 4pts.
In terms of individual performances, Diccon Gray (Kent) and Nigel Eckersley (Sussex) lead the way – both undefeated with six singles wins. Whilst for the ladies, Diane St Ledger is the sole undefeated lady player with three singles wins.
From the divisional table, you can quickly follow the links to the full set of results, individual scorecards, player averages and team and player stats.
Teams will play the remaining four matches in the second weekend session on March 11-12. It is clear from the divisional table that there is still all to play for both at the top and the bottom of the division.